Saturday, February 05, 2011

Some Things Change - Old Is The New 'New'

Some things annoy me and it has been a week of many of them.  I'll spare you all those that are not in the least music related (the much larger part of the total) and stick to the subject, more or less, of this blog.

I'm not the revolutionary type, nor do I condone cruelty to animals, but Paul Gambaccini has recently got me to the point where, were he to appear as a rabbit in the headlights, the choice between 'swerve and avoid' or 'quick, kind, road kill' might be a snap decision.
I know the statistic that he used; that only three of the top 100 selling UK singles/songs (interchangeable in these days of downloading) in 2010 were 'rock' and I'm not going to dispute it for were it one or five it would make little difference.  What is indefensible, based on this statistic, is that 'rock music' as a genre is dead. Forever.
It is a patently idiotic statement and if anyone should know that these things go in cycles he - the so-called 'Professor of Pop' - is one of those who does.  If you want an illustration of  how time changes things in music then here it is:

Imagine you are in February 2001 but [thanks to time travel] you have a copy of 'Sigh No More' and play it to a group of friends: once they stop falling about laughing and regain some self-composure you place the killer punch: Mumford & Sons are Grammy nominated for it.  You wouldn't have even got your credibility back by now were that not true.
Rock similarly, particularly the heavier end thereof, was never at the mass end of the singles chart. There were exceptions of course, some quite remarkable ones indeed, but rock is more a market for folks who buy albums - and that can be independent of format.
Sometimes it is hard to 'Hold The Line' - and yes I do reference the song by Toto, their début single (1978) - but sometimes that is important too.  I'm not stuck in the days of 70s-90s rock, that is hopefully obvious from this blog, but neither am I going to subscribe to the opinion that rock is dead, or even moribund, any time soon.

There are plenty of fine new guitar bands out there, more than I even suspect, and no shortage of new rock music - in whatever sub-genre you like - all you need to do is find it. It is easier than ever - legally so with care - and that is what the internet is for.  Find it before it is on the radio, or at least those parts of it that most folks listen to.
This, in that it is all dejá vu, prompts me to post an article from 'The Fly' for the first time since my second blog post!

For that original air of 2006 blog authenticity I made sure that it is too small to read comfortably.  You can of course click to enlarge!
Then again, with the benefit of experience and hindsight, I posted it at a sensible  size. Now what vinyl shall I listen to next and from which century?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Went to see The Go! Team tonight and pondered over buying their new album on vinyl. Only £10, same as CD! In the end faffed it because when I buy a CD the first thing I do is put it on my ipod. You can't do that with a record.

Plenty of people buying records though.